"A Separate Peace"
Gene, returns to Devon School where "everything slowly changed and slowly harmonized with what had gone before," hoping to reach harmony,too. Then, he comes to "the tree," where he and Phineas had jumped into the water. This site launches the flashback to the summer of 1942 when Phineas made him his collaborator in mischief.
In the wartime summer there is a streak of tolerance at Devon. Rather than punishing Finny for using a tie as a belt and arguing illogically, the headmaster laughs. Gene remarks that Finny gets away with everyhing because of the extraordinary person he is. He and Finny return to the tree, Gene almost falls out, but Finny grabs his arm.
The Super Suicide Society has every meeting opening with a jump from the tree. Finny displays his athletic prowess in inventing Blitzball and breaking a swimming record just to see if he could. He and Gene go to the beach and stay overnight. Finny declares Gene his best pal; Gene says nothing, "stopped by that level of feeling deeper than thought, which contains the truth."
Gene begins to suspect Finny of preventing his studies, but later learns he was mistaken about any treachery. Ashamed, "I was not of the same quality," he agrees to a double jump with Finny from the tree. G loses balance, causing F to crash onto the ground. G dives to his aid.